Mumbai : Though the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) is firm about its no-confidence motion against the chairman of the Upper House, it won’t be easy for the government to sail through the budget session of the assembly, as its ally, the Shiv Sena, has adopted a tough stand.

The NCP had moved a no-confidence motion against the chairman of the state legislative council, Shivajirao Deshmukh, after he took a few days to declare Dhananjay Munde as the opposition leader in the council. Withholding the decision in the council was perceived as a Congress move to make the NCP consent to Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil as opposition leader in state legislature assembly.

Though the issue of the Leader of Opposition in both Houses has been settled, the NCP failed to withdraw its winter session motion and this is expected to be the new bone of contention between the two parties. Shivajirao Deshmukh, a staunch Congress leader, has always been viewed as an opponent of Sharad Pawar in state politics. Hence, now, the NCP is not willing to forgive him, political analysts have said.

Though both the principal opposition parties had a joint meeting to decide upon strategy during the budget session, the issue of the no confidence motion was reportedly not discussed. Hence it is clear that though both the parties want to come together to put the government in a corner, the NCP wants to keep the Congress under pressure.

But even this warring opposition will not provide much relief to the government, as the Shiv Sena, which joined the government just before the winter session, appears to be willing to play the role of opposition again.

The Shiv Sena chief, Uddhav Thackeray, held a meeting with party MLAs on Monday, where there were complaints that many project-affected farmers were yet to receive compensation.  Further, several promises, like the waiver of farmers’ loans remained unfulfilled in the past three months.

Uddhav, it is learnt, wanted his MLAs to be more aggressive on issues related to people. “If there can be a single window for farmers, why not have it for PAPs also?” he is said to have asked.

The NCP also selected its senior leader, Jayant Patil, as the party’s group leader in the Assembly.

Abhijit Mulye

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